Keen to give Muay Thai a try? Maybe you’re a hardcore veteran of other full-body contact sports, or maybe you’re new to the world of martial arts. Whatever your situation, there are some tried and tested ways to mentally and physically prepare yourself for your first Muay Thai class.

There are plenty of classes in Muay Thai Melbourne located and beyond, so do your research and see what gyms offering Muay Thai sessions that are local to you. You might be interested in reading up on the history of the sport, or even check out some videos on YouTube to see what Muay Thai is all about. Although the beginning part of this journey might be challenging, it is also an exciting period, so make sure that you make the most of the process!

What is Muay Thai?

Also referred to as Thai boxing, Muay Thai is a combat sport which is the national sport and cultural martial art of Thailand. Known as the “art of eight limbs”, Muay Thai was developed several hundred years ago and is characterised by the combined use of shins, fists, knees and elbows, where you use stand-up striking alongside various clinching (grappling) techniques.

What to Expect From Your First Class

Most classes will start with some sort of warm up, which could include jogging around, squats, jumping rope, push-ups etc. This will be followed by a light stretch (which you should repeat at the end of the class). Once you’re all warmed up, your instructor will run the class through a few techniques and drills. Rarely will your first class involve any sparring.

A typical class could be split like this:

  • Warm up (5-10 minutes)
  • Shadow boxing (5 minutes)
  • Beginner techniques and drills (20 minutes) *mostly punching combos*
  • Advanced techniques and drills (15-20 minutes) *using both punching and kicking*
  • Intense cardio session (5-10 minutes)
  • Cool down and stretching (5 minutes)

How to Prepare For Your First Class

Don’t Eat Beforehand

It’s better to exercise with as little in your stomach as possible. If you eat and attempt to do a lot of physical, strenuous activity, you might run the risk of throwing up. If you want some energy before your class, eat a banana 30-45 minutes before you get started.

Arrive Early

Especially with your first class, it’s good to arrive nice and early so you can get acquainted with your instructor and get familiar with your surroundings. It’s important to arrive on time for any class as you don’t ever want to be late for a training session. It’s disrespectful to the other students in the class and not nice to waste their time or your instructor’s time.

Wear Appropriate Clothes

You’re going to sweat a lot during your training session so it’s good to come wearing the right gear. Clothing that has sweat-wicking material is important. You don’t have to have Muay Thai shorts for your first session, but comfortable gym-style clothes are an absolute must for any kind of martial arts class. Bring an extra shirt and towel just in case. Luckily footwear isn’t a concern as you won’t be wearing any for your session.

Bring Plenty of Water

Because of how much you are going to be sweating during your training session, it’s crucial that you bring enough water to hydrate yourself during class. Your body absorbs water best at room temperature so make sure your water bottle is full and not too hot or cold.

Hopefully these tips will help you prepare for your first Muay Thai training session. Expect muscle soreness but a lot of fun! Trying out a class before you fully commit to training is a good way to get a feel for the space and your instructor’s style of teaching.